by Barry Newton
Somehow the message made its way through the throng to the interior where the crowds were pressing upon a thirty-something man named Jesus. The message was simple. “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside wanting to speak to you.”
Suddenly, from within the confines of walls and ceiling, Jesus voice erupted exclaiming that those around him were his mother and brothers.
While the crowd was perhaps still grappling to understand exactly what Jesus might mean by this, he began to explain, “whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother” (Matthew 12:50, NET).
Matthew’s inclusion of this story from the life of Jesus appears to be placed here to challenge each of us. It challenges us to be among those whom Jesus includes as his family. It confronts us with the question, would Jesus claim me as part of his family?
This is a much more profound, helpful and enlightening question than many people apparently seem to think today.
In my experience, there is a tendency to place the emphasis upon what people are claiming about their relationship to Christ, not what Jesus might claim about them. As Matthew previously recorded, Jesus said he would say to some who were claiming that he was their Lord, “Depart from me you evil doers” (Matthew 7:21-23).
Jesus’ provides us with the perspective that matters, his perspective.
“Whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother” (Matthew 12:50).
Let’s make sure we are conforming to and engaged in doing the will of the Father.